Food & Drink

Chicago's 30 Best 4/20 Munchies

Published On 04/20/2015 Published On 04/20/2015
Sean Cooley/Thrillist
courtesy of ANTHONY SOAVE
rockit ranch productions
sean cooley/thrillist
sean cooley/thrillist
fatso's last stand
rockit burger bar
revolution brewing
courtesy of EDOUARD PIERRE
jake melnick's corner tap
sean cooley/thrillist
flickr/clarence risher
sean cooley/thrillist
kailley lindman/thrillist
courtesy of jason little photo
courtesy of KARI SKAFLEN
hamburger mary's
franks n' dawgs
courtesy of NICK BISCARDI
sean cooley/thrillist
sean cooley/thrillist
COLIN JOLIAT/thrillist
sean cooley/thrillist
margie's candies
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1. Rapidito Colombian Gourmet Bites 1855 W Diversey Pkwy, Chicago, IL 60614

This Columbian spot in Lincoln Park offers up authentic South American flavors, like their signature hot dog that comes topped with cheese, crushed potato chips, quail eggs, and about three different sauces including pineapple sauce.

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2. Flo 1434 W Chicago Ave, Chicago, IL 60642

This Latin American brunch spot is the perfect place to treat yourself to great comfort food in Noble Square. Aside from free coffee, their French toast is super tasty and their Bloodys are strong and delicious.

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3. Waffles Cafe 203 E. Ohio, Chicago, IL 60611

One of a handful of Waffles properties in Chicago, Waffles Cafe's doesn't serve up your typical waffle. They dole out versions like their Red Velvet, Green Tea, and Mexican Chocolate.

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4. Sunda 110 W Illinois St, Chicago, IL 60654

Toeing the line between swanky hotspot and sophisticated dining destination, this Asian fusion concept from Rockit Ranch Productions is a worthy choice for an undeniably hip meal out in River North. The menu offers some seriously interesting eats (duck breast kimchi, oxtail pot stickers) and includes sushi, sashimi, and plenty of wok dishes. The beer list is heavy on the Asian pours, and there are sake and speciality cocktails as well. Sunda's decor feels just as sleek as the menu with polished black bamboo and high wooden tables.

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5. Glazed & Infused 939 W Armitage Ave, Chicago, IL 60614

Glazed & Infused is a doughnut-and-dessert eatery with locations in a few places around the city -- and they're serving up treats like the Maple Bacon Long John with maple frosting and a strip of candied bacon. CANDIED. BACON.

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6. Fatso's Last Stand 2258 W Chicago Ave, Chicago, IL 60622

This no frills, Ukrainian Village eatery pretty much has the perfect name, with a menu chock-full of items like fresh-cut fries, char dogs, and burgers. One of the staples here is the Double Fatso with cheese -- two perfectly grilled beef patties flanked by slices of American cheese, onion, and secret sauce -- a burger that can give In-N-Out a run for its money.

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7. Rockit Burger Bar 3700 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60613

This is the only time you'll hear "Come see what's between our buns," and not be freaked out. Rockit Burger Bar offers some badass burgers, including gems like the huevos rancheros burger and a chicken breast patty aptly named "The Motherclucker." If you're craycray and burgers aren't your thing, flatbreads and small bites are also served.

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8. Revolution Brewpub 2323 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

Salvaged wood and classic styling make for a handsome space wherein you can down your favorite Revolution brew and pair it with a tasty sandwich, burger, or even a pork chop.

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9. Big Star 1531 N Damen Ave, Chicago, IL 60622

A lot of things about Wicker Park's Big Star will make you feel like you're in Texas. First, there's the taco-centric menu that features a dozen taco varieties and necessary sides like guacamole and queso. Then there's the drink selection, which is heavy on whiskey, tequila, and craft beer. The massive outdoor patio begs for you to order a margarita and drink the day away, especially during the summer when the seasonal music series is in full swing.

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10. Jake Melnick's Corner Tap 41 E Superior St, Chicago, IL 60611

Jake Melnick's Corner Tap is a beer bar in River North, Chicago that's serving up some killer hot wings and other bar foods.

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11. Firecakes 68 W Hubbard St, Chicago, IL 60654

The latest addition to Chicago's coffee-dunking circuit, Firecakes is a small-batch donut shop from the owner of La Madia, rotating a roster of sweetness like Tahitian vanilla glazed, blood orange and raspberry jelly, and Nutella long johns that'll provide a comfortable home for your (hazel)nuts.

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12. Dimo's Pizza Wicker Park 1615 N Damen Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

Dimo's Pizza's Wicker Park location is bigger than the original Lakeview one, has got $1 slices with certifiably crazy toppings, and a beer menu of local and season drafts and cans.

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13. Beavers Coffee and Donuts 131 N Clinton St, Chicago, IL 60661

Beavers Coffee and Donuts serves up delicious drinks and pastries, and occasionally has been known to combine the two into some crazy Frankenstein milkshakes.

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14. Parts and Labor 2700 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

Parts and Labor is a hamburger-centric barestaurant in Logan Square known for its griddle burgers, sodas, and beer. The classic double burger, topped with two slices of American cheese, packs so many sandwich pickles between buns that you'll get a taste of the crisp texture in every bite. Vegetarians, don't be turned away by the beefy signature -- black bean and vegan patties are available, and the grilled cheese sandwich is a beautiful blend of three cheeses.

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15. Del Seoul 2568 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60614

Inspired by the Korean taco craze that's become a food truck staple across the land, DS is bringing that street ethos to a takeout-focused brick 'n mortar joint covered in food cart-esque sheet metal and three flat-screens touting the menu, so finally TVs'll actually help you stuff your face in front of them.

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16. Crew Bar & Grill 4804 N Broadway St, Chicago, IL 60640

This Uptown sports bar has a solid list of beer in bottles and on draft, $7 Double Bloody Marys on the weekends, and tasty fare like a chicken fried burger -- a crispy, deep-fried chicken thigh topped with remoulade, IPA caramelized onions, and pickles on a bun.

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17. Au Cheval 800 W Randolph, Chicago, IL 60607

This upscale West Loop restaurant is known for its European flair and sophisticated American diner-style eats. Au Cheval usually has a wait out the door at peak dinner hours because it's home to iconic signature items like the fried house-made bologna sandwich and the so-called single burger, which actually comes with two thin patties and is topped with American cheese, house Dijonnaise, pickles, and if you know what's good for you, the optional bacon and fried egg add-ons. The brasserie-like space includes an open kitchen and a bar where local, domestic, and international beers are all on tap.

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18. Hamburger Mary's 5400 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60640

When you can’t decide whether you want something salty, sweet, or spicy, why not get all three? Hamburger Mary’s Big Fatty Challenge covers all the basics for when the munchies strike: huge-ass burger, fries, hot wings, chicken tenders, onion rings, and deep-fried Twinkies. This, my friends, is not a drill.

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19. Franks 'N Dawgs 1863 N Clybourn, Chicago, IL 60614

Chef'd by a Blackbird/Sixteen alum, FND looks like an unassuming hot dog stand decked out in red, black, and steel and ornamented with photos of local graffiti (would also be American Graffiti, but shockingly Opie isn't anywhere).

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20. The Handlebar 2311 W North Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

This hipster-approved restaurant and bar in Wicker Park serves a vegan and vegetarian menu of American classics. Breakfast is served daily until 3pm (don't worry, there are plenty of egg dishes) but expect seitan sausage instead of bacon. The rest of the menu (it serves lunch and dinner too) is filled with meat-free bar bites like fried avocado tacos, chili cheese fries (available with vegan queso), soy-based sloppy Joes, all of which taste especially good when paired with a drink in the beer garden.

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21. Lucky's Sandwich Co. 3472 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60657

Lucky's serves up Pittsburgh-style sandos that'll fill ya up, especially if you get a side of their deep-fried hunks of Provolone. Attempt the Lucky’s Challenge, because why opt for just one Pittsburgh-style hulk sandwich with fries and coleslaw in it when you could have THREE stacked with different kinds of deli meats? Devour all overstuffed sandwiches within an hour, and all of 'em are on the house and your pretty mug will live on wall of fame style, which is just as cool as doing it for Man v. Food, right?

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22. Quenchers Saloon 2401 N Western Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

Opened in 1979, this laid-back corner bar on the Bucktown/Logan border was a craft beer bar way before people on the Internet were making lists of good craft beer bars. Because there was no Internet. And, there weren’t really other beer bars. They aren’t really the type to brag that they did it first, though (well, they do call themselves “Chicago’s Original Beer Bar,” but they don’t broadcast it too loudly). They’re too busy maintaining an unassailable tap list, throwing kickass rock shows in the back, and offering kickass-er specials all week. Just because you have great craft beer doesn’t mean people can’t appreciate $1 Blatz and $2 mystery shots.

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23. Gibsons Bar & Steakhouse 1028 N Rush St, Chicago, IL 60611

This upscale Gold Coast steakhouse is known for three things: its celebrity clientele, mammoth steaks (especially the Tomahawk 42 chop), and macadamia turtle pie. Gibsons is where you go to eat an over-the-top meal in the company of high-rollers.

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24. Buzz Bar 1935 W Irving Park Rd, Chicago, IL 60613

Buzz Bar's a Chicago burger temple with patties sandwiched between traditional buns, ramen buns, donut buns... you name it, they've got it! They're also slinging a bunch of unique burger toppings, like beef stroganoff with actual egg noodles.

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25. Hoppin' Hots 1477 W Balmoral, Chicago, IL 60640

Hoppin' Hots is the place to get deliciously decorated and crazily infused hot dogs.

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26. Edzo's Burger Shop 1571 Sherman Ave, Evanston, IL 60201

Edzo isn't the name of a creepy clown but of an awesome burger joint with a serious '70s vibe. The patties are made from house-ground chuck that's pressed, griddled, then topped with extras like fried egg or giardiniera relish. The menu includes elevated French fry options -- order them "Crazy" to get a topping of chili, cheese, and chopped onion or "Angry" with four kinds of spices. Edzo's is also known for its milkshakes, which are made the old-fashioned way -- on a slow-mixing spindle machine -- to yield an extra-smooth and creamy texture.

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27. Cookies & Carnitas 5759 N Broadway St, Chicago, IL 60660

Cookies & Carnitas serve exactly what you think they would... plus sandwiches, pizza, tacos, salads, and the Dirk Diggler: an obscenely long, specially made kosher dog served with Mexican-style relish.

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28. Kaiser Tiger 1415 W Randolph St, Chicago, IL 60607

This absolutely insane temple of beer is adorned with a 200-seat beer garden, killer skyline views, 24 primo drafts, flights of sausage, and the heart-stopping brown sugar-rubbed bacon bomb.

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29. Margie's Candies 1960 N Western Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

To put it in blunt terms, you simply haven't lived the true Chicago life until you've been to the legendary Margie's Candies. Serving Bucktown since 1921, this generations-old candy shop offers every confection imaginable, all made by hand every day. The ice cream, scooped into homemade waffle cones and delicately dipped in a rich chocolate sauce, is so decadent that both The Rolling Stones and The Beatles have ventured here after shows to satisfy their (brown) sugar cravings.